A Letter to YOLO

by Christina

Dates on the calendar are such a strange thing.

A joyful event occurs on a certain date and you remember that date forever. A tragedy falls on a day and you never forget and dread its anniversary remembering anew that things will never be the same again. And meanwhile, we cross hundreds of days off our calendars, one by one, with routine and regularity, like the ding of a noon church bell. Days pass. Even on the best or worst days, they contain the same number of seconds.

What makes a day feel eternally long?

How is it that a day can fly by?

And how much of our lives do we spend looking back at golden memory days or regretting that a certain day came?

Heck, we even talk about how some days aren’t even important (I’m talking to you, Arbor Day). We can dismiss whole days with relief or disgust. But I think there’s something more to consider here like:

What if time is irrelevant?

Seems hard to believe, actually. Time is relevant to me on a micro-level. If I really treated time as if it were irrelevant, my daughter would STILL be waiting for me to pick her up at school, my wet laundry would be sour, I’d miss my flight, we’d never meet for coffee, and it wouldn’t matter how quickly I ran the 50 yard dash in the 3rd grade.

My dad died this year. He died 7 days after a cancer diagnosis. He didn’t feel great for a few weeks and then, wow, suddenly we knew things were dire. But I still had no idea in all this earth that we would only be able to be in his presence for another week. So I became a new member of the club; the club of people who dread that a day came and that its anniversary is on the horizon. What a crappy club.

Ecclesiastes chapter 3 tells me that there are seasons for lots of things like planting, healing, breaking down, building up, laughing, crying, even for dancing (maybe that one’s not for all of us *white man’s overbite*). There’s time for all of that between being born and dying.

But James 4 feels a little more my speed (read: realist) when it essentially says for all ya’ll who make your to-do lists and set your calendar reminders on your phones for tasks you deem important, you’ve got no clue. You’re pretty much like a one hit wonder when it comes to all that God put here. Try this: Think about the fact that time doesn’t add up to a hill of beans. If I live today, I live today (and I’ll try to remember to pick up my kid). That’s it. God’s timepiece is the one to reference when you get outta bed each day.

YOLO, baby. You only live once and concocting a slew of plans and assuming they’re super important is super silly. By the way, I know you’re impressed that I am on the back edge of the hip hop, party-like-you-mean-it, carpe diem craze.

But I think YOLO gets at why we started this blog. We keep hemming and hawing about whether it’s the right thing. We hedge our bets and, seeing other people’s success, we back off the idea. But if we have literally no way to know how long we are on this big round ball of gravity-ville, why wouldn’t we try doing something we love? Why wouldn’t we just take a step without looking far ahead?

And so our happy “blog birthday” is October 1st, 2014. And even though we only live once because we’re YOLO’ers, celebrating the anniversary of that day will be a bright spot amongst hundreds of days that are, well, regular days. I am so thankful for the regular days. And I have to say that I am thankful for the hard days but I’m still most thankful for this day.